Mike Hobart Quintet

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Last Show: Sunday 7 th August 2016

PizzaExpress Jazz Club (Soho)

Mike Hobart is a soulful saxophonist with a warm tone and a fluid technique. Self taught with a little help from UK free-jazz iconoclast Evan Parker, he cut his professional teeth with the chart-topping soul band Johnny Johnson & the Bandwagon. Since then, he has balanced the free and the funky on the European festival circuit, clubs and studio sessions. Credits include gigs with Esther Phillips, the American poet Barry Wallenstein, and a long stint with Otis Grand. His first inspirations were the flowing freedoms of Miles Davis’1960s quintet and the soulful blues of Ray Charles, but a lot has happened since then. His new CD 'Evidential' puts it all together, gives it an urban twist and keeps it soulful and swinging. 

"Thirty years ago this might have been called acid jazz, and thirty years before that hard bop. But it doesn't matter what you call it - the quality of the music is evidential."

London Jazz News

“Hobart’s Quintet has all the funky oomph of bands like Led Bib and Get the Blessing whilst fully encompassing the old-school jazz virtues of melodic and harmonic development which those otherwise admirable bands tend to forego. Hobart’s crew shifts between moods and idioms with Mingusian ease ...excellent compositions and exciting improvisations...” - Barry Witherden,  Jazz Journal / BBC Music Magazine 

“...fresh with surprises: the romantic melody of “Rosie”, or “Maces Paces” toying with a Maceo Parker riff before Adrian Reid’s keyboards move towards Head Hunters-era Herbie Hancock. Reid’s electric piano at the start of “Victory to the Underdog” provides the base for a wondrous extended dialogue between Lee and Hobart.”  - David Honigmann, Financial Times

“meaty, beaty, big and bouncy” - Jez Nelson

“an intense distillation of the music they call jazz. Big music played with a passionate cool”. “The highlight of the night was Hobart’s composition ‘The Vista’. Hobart’s gruff tenor sax sound whipped the 12/8 groove into a storm” - Andy Robson & Jonathan Carvell, Jazzwise

“superb” - Chris Phillips 

“Hobart himself plays a thrilling, sometimes raw-sounding sax, controlled and lyrical where needed, at others wild and echoing shades of R&B as he drives into the edges of the avant-garde” - John Harvey, Straight No Chaser

“awesome stuff” - Orphy Robinson

Band Lineup

Mike Hobart (sax)

Chris Lee (trumpet)

Tal Janes (guitar)

Will Harris (bass)

Eric Ford (drums)